March 8, 2011 © Homer Kizer
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Commentary — From the Margins
A Disciple’s Righteousness
Be imitators of me, as I am of Christ. / Now I commend you because you remember me in everything and maintain the traditions even as I delivered them to you. But I want you to understand that the head of every man is Christ, the head of a wife is her husband, and the head of Christ is God. Every man who prays or prophesies with his head covered dishonors his head, but every wife who prays or prophesies with her head uncovered dishonors her head, since it is the same as if her head were shaven. For if a wife will not cover her head, then she should cut her hair short. But since it is disgraceful for a wife to cut off her hair or shave her head, let her cover her head. For a man ought not to cover his head, since he is the image and glory of God, but woman is the glory of man. For man was not made from woman, but woman from man. Neither was man created for woman, but woman for man. That is why a wife ought to have a symbol of authority on her head, because of the angels. Nevertheless, in the Lord woman is not independent of man nor man of woman; for as woman was made from man, so man is now born of woman. And all things are from God. Judge for yourselves: is it proper for a wife to pray to God with her head uncovered? Does not nature itself teach you that if a man wears long hair it is a disgrace for him, but if a woman has long hair, it is her glory? For her hair is given to her for a covering. If anyone is inclined to be contentious, we have no such practice, nor do the churches of God. (1 Cor 11:1–16 emphasis added)
If the righteous of Christ Jesus—grace—is sufficient covering for the Christian, who when glorified, will be the Bride of Christ Jesus, then why does Paul tell disciples to be imitators of me, as I am of Christ? And after telling the holy ones at Corinth to be imitators of him, Paul, as he imitates Christ, Paul introduces the subject of head coverings, which follows in context Paul’s instructions concerning physical associations and eating what is sold in the meat market without inquiring how the meat came to be in the market—and precedes Paul’s rebuking of the holy ones for how they were keeping the Passover. So imitating Paul as he imitates Christ is part of Paul’s general instructions to the holy ones as is the need for female head coverings, with the three concepts united by context.
The above is correct: imitating Christ, head coverings, and taking the Passover sacraments on the night that Jesus was betrayed share a common theological reality. All three are signs or symbols of what the Christian disciple must add to grace. All three serve as outer garments or coverings with which the disciple dresses him or herself, coverings that the disciple puts on over the undergarment of Christ Jesus’ righteousness, the covering for which the holy one does nothing. And only when the disciple is dressed with the undergarment of grace and outer garments representing the disciple’s belief of God is the disciple “protected” from exposure to lawlessness, the cold darkness of this world.
Imitating Paul as Paul imitates Christ Jesus is a work of faith that will have the Christian walking before God as an observant Judean, keeping the commandments as Jesus kept the commandments and as Paul kept the commandments; for Paul says of himself, “‘Neither against the law of the Jews, nor against the temple, nor against Caesar have I committed any offense’” (Acts 25:8).
But if, as most of Christendom claims, the righteousness of Christ Jesus alone was sufficient for salvation, there would be no need for the holy one to walk in a holy manner; i.e., to walk uprightly before God, being blameless and without breaking the commandments. Christians could live as Gentiles as they mostly do in this present era and still be saved, but this is simply not the case according to Paul. Christians cannot live as they formerly did. They cannot continue to live “in the passions of our flesh, carrying out the desires of the body and the mind” as sons of disobedience (Eph 2:3); for the Christian “cannot drink the cup of the Lord and the cup of demons … cannot partake of the table of the Lord and the table of demons” (1 Cor 10:21).
Paul links taking the Passover sacraments of bread and wine on the night that Jesus was betrayed with imitating him as he imitates Christ—“For I received from the Lord what I also delivered to you, that the Lord Jesus on the night when He was betrayed took bread, and when He had given thanks, He broke it and said, ‘This is my body which is for you. Do this in remembrance of me’” (1 Cor 11:23–24)—and Paul links covering or not covering the head with Christ Jesus and the churches of God being represented in the creation of Adam and Eve and these two being one flesh. For Paul continues in his epistle to the holy ones at Corinth, writing, “Thus it is written, ‘The first man Adam became a living [breathing] being’; the last Adam became a life-giving spirit” (1 Cor 15:45). Elsewhere, Paul wrote, “Yet death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over those whose sinning was not like the transgression of Adam, who was a type of the one who was to come” (Rom 5:14). For Paul, the Church of God was the spiritual Eve that was of the last Adam as Eve was of Adam, and that was one spirit with the last Adam as Eve was one flesh with Adam. And for Paul, the marriage relationship between one man and one woman represented as a sign or symbol the relationship between Christ and His Body, the Church.
When a disciple walks as Jesus walked, the disciple will place an additional covering of righteousness over the top of grace, an additional covering that is as needful as taking the Passover sacraments on the night that Jesus was betrayed, the dark portion of the 14th of Aviv. The disciple will, by imitating Paul as he imitates Jesus, cover the righteousness of Christ Jesus with his or her own righteousness, which will not be perfect but have the Christian striving for perfection … so there is no misunderstanding, a Christian’s righteousness will have blemishes in it and of itself is not adequate for salvation. But without covering the righteousness of Christ Jesus with the Christian’s own righteousness, the Christian will not be saved for the Christian will not be a fractal of Christ Jesus. Simply wearing the garment of Christ doesn’t make the Christian look like Christ. If it did, there would be no need to consciously walk as Christ Jesus walked. The Christian would be unable to walk in any other manner. The righteousness of Christ would be like a straitjacket that prevents any non-Christlike movements. Receiving the spirit of God would turn the human person into a robot, and this is not the case for Christians will continue to come short of the glory of God even when striving for this glory.
When the Second Passover liberation of Israel occurs at the second Passover, all Christians will be suddenly and forcibly filled-with and empowered by the spirit of God so that Sin and Death will no longer dwell in the fleshly members of Christians. If receipt of the Holy Spirit [pneuma hagion] to the extent that the Christian is filled with spirit would then be sufficient for salvation, no disciple could be lost; no Apostasy [the great falling away] could occur. Every Christian would love the truth and so be saved. And this will not be the case; for the majority of spirit-filled Christians will join with the man of perdition, the lawless one who comes through being possessed by the Adversary, and God will send over them “a strong delusion, so that they may believe what is false, in order that all may be condemned who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness” (2 Thess 2:11–12). And if when Christians when filled with the spirit will still choose unrighteousness over righteousness, how much more so do they today love unrighteousness? They are enamored by unrighteousness, flirting with it as a maid flirts with a lad or a cougar with a young man.
For a Christian—for every Christian that will be the Bride of Christ at the Wedding Supper—two coverings of righteousness are necessary, one that is natural in that all Christians are covered by the righteousness of Christ Jesus, with this righteousness described by the linguistic icon, grace. The second covering will be of the Christian’s own making through walking as Jesus walked, imitating Paul as he imitated Jesus—and through taking the Passover sacraments on the night that Jesus was betrayed.
While it is appropriate for a man to pray to God with his hair uncovered—that is, with his hair cut short and not covered by a cap—it is not all right for the woman, the representation of Eve and of the last Eve, the Christian Church, to pray with her head uncovered, with her hair being one covering that is a representation of grace and with a second covering, a fabric covering she has made with her own hands, that is the representation of voluntarily walking as Jesus walked, and of taking the sacraments on the night Jesus was betrayed.
The theological logic for wives to cover their hair with a fabric [which traditionally, they would have made] covering is in the necessity for a Christian to imitate Paul as he imitated Christ, or for a Christian to imitate John as he imitated Christ, or for a Christian to imitate James as he imitated Christ. The basis for covering long hair with a cap is constructed on the need for a Christian to imitate Christ Jesus even though the Christian is covered by the garment of Christ’s righteousness; i.e., His, Jesus’, belief of God. For in the analogy that has the Christian’s natural covering of hair being a representation of grace—a covering for which the Christian has to do nothing—the woman represents the Church, the Bride, and her husband represents the head of the Church, Christ. And as every Christian needs to imitate Christ, walking as Jesus walked, the woman needs to cover her covering of hair with a cover she has made with her hands, a covering that shows to man and angels that she is in subjection to her husband. For Christian women to not cover their long hair with a covering that they have made shows man and angels that the sect or creed to which they subscribe is not in subjection to Christ Jesus.
The question should exist: why isn’t a woman’s hair an adequate covering for her head as English translators would seem to have made it … a person does nothing to cause hair to grow on the human head. Whereas the hair of human beings on other parts of their bodies is diminutive and not adequate protection against the elements, the hair of human beings by nature grows long on the head through no effort of the person. Thus, the nakedness of Adam and Eve that they covered with fig leaves was the nakedness of their groin regions, where hair also grows longer than on other parts of the body except for the head. There is no real questioning of the reality that the hair of the groin, both of the man and the woman, should be covered by modest attire. But the woman has no “head” in this region; whereas the man does, with this head of the man naturally covered by the foreskin, which in circumcision is clipped away so that the head of the man is made naked. Therefore, in the Lord creating the first man, the Lord created a head on the man that was naturally covered by the foreskin and by the man’s belief of God that led to his obedience. Thus, the man had two coverings, one physical [the foreskin], and one spiritual [his belief of God that produced obedience]. The woman also had two coverings; however, both of hers were spiritual—the belief and obedience of her head, her husband, and her own belief and obedience of her husband.
The penis of a man, in natural, represents the man, something that ancient pagan religions understood, with the traces of these ancient ideologies present in modern church steeples, phallic symbols disclosing that for the particular church the Cross is the image of their head. But the woman had no such head; thus, the grotto became the pagan representation of the wet, dark underworld of femininity. The woman, to have a head, must be joined to a man in marriage, with her husband then becoming her head. Hence, the woman was created incomplete as was the man, who is unable to reproduce himself. The woman and the man, together, make one human unit, with one head and one womb, both of which were naturally covered and then in the Garden of God, spiritually covered by belief that led to obedience. Hence, before the Lord drove the man and the woman from the Garden, He made for them skin clothing to replace their loss of the garment of obedience.
The Apostle Paul brings all of the above into his discussion of why the holy ones at Corinth did not want to provoke the Lord to jealousy, for they were not stronger than the Lord (see 1 Cor 10:22).
In moving from physical [the head of a human unit being the circumcised head of the husband’s penis] to spiritual, where outward circumcision no longer matters for both men and women, when baptized in the Lord, are sons of God, Paul moves from penis to the human head as the representation of two being one flesh. Paul quits phallic symbols and grottos, and uses the natural growth of hair on the human head to represent the inner covering of grace that clothes the resurrected-from-death inner self. For a Christian man, having outwardly visible short hair represents the previously concealed circumcision of the penis, the natural head of the man. For the Christian woman, having outwardly visible long hair represents the previously concealed grotto of her womb. Thus, the Christian woman with long hair is spiritually as a naturally naked human woman—and this is the correspondence that the majority of Anabaptists have understood at least at some level. The Christian woman who is seen in prayer by God and the angels with uncovered long hair is as a publicly naked woman in this physical world. Likewise, the Christian man who is seen in prayer by God with long hair is as an uncircumcised Gentile attempting to enter the physical temple.
What Paul leaves out of his analogy when he moves the circumcision that matters from the penis to the heart isn’t actually left-out, but just isn’t visible to those who do not have the spirit of God: every human person can be circumcised of heart. Gender, ethnicity, and social status are no longer barriers to entering the temple of God that is the Christian Church. And when outward circumcision is no longer of importance, the symbol representing the uncovered head of a man must also change just as the symbol representing the sacrifice of the paschal lamb was changed by Christ Jesus from a bleating lamb to the broken unleavened bread representing His body and the Cup representing His blood. Thus, Paul, with considerable patience, explains to the holy ones at Corinth how the symbols representing one man being the head of one woman, his wife, changed with receipt of the spirit of God and the resurrection of the inner self from death.
Again, because Paul hasn’t been understood—which is a great shame to all of Christendom—when circumcision is no longer of the flesh but of the heart, the head of the penis no longer represents the head of the man. Rather, the Christian man’s head [cranium] represents the man’s head, Christ Jesus, with the length of the man’s hair representing whether the man is circumcised of heart or uncircumcised.
When circumcision is of the heart, the Christian woman has one head, Christ Jesus, that is represented by her cranium being covered by long hair. When the Christian woman marries, she takes to herself a second head, one that is of flesh, her husband, and she represents her submission to the authority of her husband by covering her long hair with a covering she has made with her own hands just as she has married via her own will. The fabric covering with which the married woman covers her long hair is analogous to the garments with which she continues to cover her groin area: she is just as undressed spiritually without a fabric covering of her long hair as she would be if she appeared naked physically in public.
As discussed in the first part of this commentary, Eve was covered by Adam’s belief of God as well by her belief of her husband. Two coverings that function as one covering; for a woman’s hair is to be covered by a fabric cap of her own making, a point of revelation that Anabaptists have possessed since the 16th-Century.
In a marriage, it isn’t the man that represents the greater Christian Church; it is the woman who shall be saved through childbirth (1 Tim 2:15) that represents the Church. The man represents the Bridegroom, Christ Jesus, over whom is God, Christ Jesus’ Head as Christ Jesus is the Head of the man (1 Cor 11:3). But the man is of the woman as Isaac was of Sarah, and as Esau was of Rebekah. Therefore, the man is represented in the woman (v. 12) who, again, represents the Church. The man is born of the Church: he is not born as the Head of the Church. He is only the head of his wife through marriage.
Moses was not born as the head of Israel, but was born of Israel. However, Moses was not reared as a slave, but as a free man in the household of Pharaoh. Then as an adult man, Moses chose to identify with Israel when he slew the Egyptian that was beating a Hebrew. From that time, Moses was a free fugitive dwelling in the land of Midian. And there, separated from his people and outside of Egypt, the land representing Sin, Moses was chosen by the Lord to be God to Aaron, his brother (Ex 4:16), and by extension, to be God to Israel. The Lord made Moses the head of Israel as the Lord made man first, then woman. The Lord, through Pharaoh’s daughter, made Moses a free man before the Lord freed the people of Israel. Moses made himself a fugitive: the Lord didn’t make Moses a fugitive. Thus, in Moses’ walk as a free man is seen the two coverings of 40 years each that represent Moses’ single walk as a free man.
In making the man of mud first, then making the woman from the man of mud, the Lord gave to Adam preeminence over the woman, Eve, as the Most High God had preeminence over Yah, the Logos [Ò Logos], who entered His creation (John 1:3) as His only Son (John 3:16), the man Jesus the Nazarene (John 1:14), with this preeminence continued when the resurrected Jesus told Mary Magdalene not to cling to Him for he had not yet ascended to His God and His Father (John 20:17).
The Logos [Ò Logos] who was God [Theos— no article] and who was with the God [ton Theon] in the beginning (John 1:1) is not the man Jesus the Nazarene, but is the natural Father of the man Jesus. It was not until the breath of the God [pneuma Theon] descended upon Jesus as a dove (Matt 3:16) that Jesus becomes the beloved Son of the Most High God … when Jesus received a second breath of life, the Holy Spirit [pneuma hagion], Jesus was twice born.
Jesus received His initial breath of life through Elohim, singular in usage, breathing His breath into the nostrils of the man of mud (Gen 2:7), with this breath of life continuing throughout the generations of humankind until it came to Him through Mary—this is Jesus’ first breath of life, the breath that every descendant of the man Adam has received. And Jesus received a second breath of life when the breath of God the Father descended upon Him as a dove. It was Yah who breathed life into the man of mud. Thus, Jesus’ two breaths of life came from the Logos who was God [one breath of life], and came from the God who is represented in the Tetragrammaton YHWH by the <WH> radical. Yah is represented by the <YH> radical, with <H> representing the breath of each.
In the Tetragrammaton YHWH two deities function as one deity as Adam and Eve were one flesh. To continue usage of the Tetragrammaton YHWH after Yah entered His creation as His only Son, the man Jesus of Nazareth, is blasphemy against the Father and the Son; for continued usage of the YHWH is denial of Christ Jesus, and the person who denies Christ will be denied by Christ. Hence, every Christian who, through almost unimaginable hubris, adds vowel pointing to the Tetragrammaton YHWH and attempts to pronounce it denies Christ Jesus and has been permanently cut off from God. When this Christian dies, he or she will be resurrected into the lake of fire … while blasphemy against the Father and the Son can be forgiven, denial of Christ removes the possibility of being forgiven. So the logger or mill worker who takes Christ’s name in vain can be forgiven, but the Christian who has succumbed to the Sacred Names Heresy denies the very basis for forgiveness and will not be forgiven.
When the glorified Jesus breathed on ten of His disciples and said, Receive the Holy Spirit [ pneuma hagion— breath holy] (John 20:22), Jesus continued and said, “‘If you forgive the sins of anyone, they are forgiven; if you withhold forgiveness from anyone, it is withheld’” (v. 23). Thus, possession of the spirit of God gives to the Christian authority to forgive sins and to withhold forgiveness: the blasphemy of those Sabbatarian Christians who deny Christ through using bastardized Hebrew pronunciations for Jesus’ name and through denying that the Logos was God, the God who created everything that has been made, shall not have their sins forgiven. Forgiveness for them is withheld. Repentance for them is not possible, for the Father has already sent over them a strong delusion “in order that all may be condemned who did not believe the truth” (2 Thess 2:12).
The Apostle Paul writes of two holy spirits, the breath of Christ [pneuma Christos] (Rom 8:9) and the breath of the One who raised Jesus from death (Rom 8:11), and indeed, two holy spirits/breaths are seen in the Tetragrammaton YHWH.
The man Jesus the Nazarene is the only begotten Son of Yah, not of the Father <WH>. The Man Jesus is the First of the firstborn sons of the Father; thus, Paul wrote, “For those whom He [<WH>] foreknew He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, in order that He [Jesus] might be the firstborn among many brothers” (Rom 8:29).
Many brothers. Foreknown. Predestined. For a couple of centuries, Christians have tried to duck the importance of what Paul claims: sons of God are actual “sons,” with Christ Jesus being the First of many sons of God, all to be as Jesus presently is, born of the Father through the Father giving to the Christian indwelling eternal life—His breath—in Christ Jesus, the vessel able to contain this bright fire that comes from God and is of the Father alone. Indwelling eternal life comes via the spirit of God [pneuma Theon] in the indwelling spirit of Christ [pneuma Christos] … it was the spirit/breath of Yah that King David asked not to have taken from him (Ps 51:11), not the breath of the Father, with the Father being the One whom Jesus came to reveal to His disciples, not to all of Israel, let alone to the world.
The end of the age could not come upon all of humankind as the Flood of Noah’s day came upon all breathing creatures if Jesus had revealed the Father to all of humankind; thus, Jesus’ disciples are like those who boarded the Ark with Noah, a representation of the glorified Jesus, and the seven with him, types of the angels to the seven churches.
No person can come to the Father in this era unless the Christian was foreknown by the Father. A person cannot by the exercise of free will compel the Father to give to the person indwelling eternal life. Hence, before the Second Passover liberation of Israel at the second Passover, only those individuals who are/were foreknown by the Father will receive indwelling eternal life, and this number is extremely small. Not just the majority of the Christian Church but almost all of the greater Christian Church has not been drawn from this world by the Father. Although Christians profess that Jesus is Lord by definition [what the word Christian means], the vast majority of Christians absolutely refuse to walk as Jesus walked, thus revealing that they are not born of God. If they were of God, they would walk as Jesus walked, the point that John makes: see 1 John 3:4–10.
To repeat the point for emphasis: in this present era, with very few exceptions, Christians are not of God even though they profess that Jesus is Lord … when I was first called to reread prophecy in a calling like that of the Apostle Paul, I assumed that many Christians were born of God, with these Christians scattered throughout various sects and creeds. But this is not the case. As I grew larger in grace and knowledge, I realized that it was the truly exceptional Christian who was actually born of spirit, that most Christians—because they profess that Jesus are Lord—are covered by the righteousness of Christ Jesus so that they are “marked” when the Second Passover liberation of Israel occurs. They are then known even though they were not foreknown; i.e., called by God before the Second Passover. But they do not today have the spirit of God. Thus, their transgressions of the Law are covered by the fact that they are dead, that is by the fact that their inner selves have not yet been raised from death. They cannot sin in the heavenly realm for they have no life in that supra-dimensional realm. They need no covering except that of their physical death for their sins.
With few exceptions, Christians cannot imagine being ignored by God when they, of their own free will, choose to identify themselves with Christ Jesus, professing with their mouths that Jesus is Lord and claiming to have a personal relationship with Christ Jesus while continuing to live as spiritual Gentiles, prima facie evidence that they are not born of God … if God were to give birth to all who profess to be of Christ—this is what will happen at the Second Passover—Christ Jesus would then be obligated to condemn all who will not believe Him to the second death, the lake of fire. The Christian who commits blasphemy against the spirit of God through willfully transgressing the commandments after being born of spirit has no sacrifice remaining for the Christian. This means, in its most simplified form, that after being born of God as a son every Christian who mingles the sacred [Christ] with the profane [the day of the invincible sun; the birthday of the invincible sun] doesn’t have the transgression counted against the Christian but is condemned because of his or her unbelief that produced the transgression, meaning that accidental or unintentional transgressions are ignored as are intentional transgressions, but unbelief that is rebellion against the spirit is not ignored but is fatal.
The nation of Israel numbered in the census of the second year could not enter the Lord’s rest because of this nation’s unbelief (Heb 3:19). Likewise, greater Christendom, liberated at the Second Passover and numbered when the temple is measured (Rev 11:1), cannot enter heaven because of their unbelief that will be manifested on the day when the lawless one is revealed (2 Thess 2:3) through their mingling of the sacred with the profane in Christmas observance, 220 days after their liberation from indwelling Sin and Death.
When Christians are filled-with and empowered by the spirit of God at the Second Passover liberation of Israel, the Christian through no work, no effort of his or her own will no longer have any indwelling Sin or Death although the Christian will still be mortal. But Death will only come to the Christian from an outside cause: martyrdom. The Christian will not then need a second covering of belief that is counted to the Christian as righteousness. All the Christian has to do to be saved is endure to the end (Matt 24:13). Nothing else. But enduring means not returning to Sin once the Christian has been filled with spirit, having the Torah written on hearts and placed in minds so that every Christian knows the Lord.
But even after Christians are liberated from indwelling Sin and Death, the majority of them will rebel against God and return to Sin, such is the Adversary’s deception … there is a valid reason why the two witnesses wear mourning garb.
It is a shame to Christendom that a man—any man—has to address the subject of Christian women covering, but in this present era, the majority of all women who identify themselves as Christians appear as public women, a term used by Yankee officers when addressing prostitution in Nashville during the Civil War. American fashion emphasizes sexuality, thereby transforming women into objects of the male gaze. And while a counterargument to the objectification of women exists—an argument that claims by women being made into sexual objects they are empowered and hold power over men—the Christian woman should not be marketed as merchandise as Abram marketed Sarai in Egypt through the half truth that she is my sister. There is no righteousness in half truths, in being half covered, in transforming Christian women into attractive livestock that can be purchased for a dinner and a dance.
The argument that woman are empowered by appearing in public in various stages of undress, that their sexuality gives them power over the male gaze so that they control it rather than being controlled by it, is an argument for darkness [the grotto] having power over light. This is an argument that holds nothing can escape a black hole, that light cannot escape, that righteousness can only exist as Hawking radiation exists. But this argument was defeated when Christ Jesus was resurrected from death and ascended to His Father and our Father, and will again be defeated when the two witnesses, establishing the defeat of Death, are resurrected after the darkness of the third day ends through this world being taken from the four kings and the little horn and given to the Son of Man.
The great shame of Christendom is that Muslim women cover their hair and except for the notable exception of Anabaptist women, Christian women do not understand that they also need to cover their natural covering that is for them, grace, and that is represented by their hair with a second covering, one they have made with their hands that is analogous to imitating Paul as Paul imitated Christ Jesus.
Did Paul have authority over the glorified Jesus, who struck Paul blind on the road to Damascus? Of course not! Jesus did not imitate Paul. Rather, Paul imitated Jesus, and through imitation showed that Jesus was Paul’s head, not the other way around. It is for this reason that Christians imitate Christ, their Head, and the Head of the Woman.
Therefore, the question must be asked: was the righteousness of Jesus sufficient to save Paul, then Saul of Tarsus, if Paul had not done as he was told and afterwards proceeded to imitate Jesus?
What would have happened if Paul, not deterred by being struck blind, would have continued in his quest to kill Christians? Would Paul have been saved? Were the pricks to Paul’s conscience adequate to save Paul?
Being covered by the righteousness of Christ Jesus doesn’t permit the Christian to continue in sin: John expresses this concept as, “No one who abides in Him [Jesus] keeps on sinning; no one who keeps on sinning has either seen Him or known Him. … No one born of God makes a practice of sinning” (1 John 3:6, 9).
Determining who is or who hasn’t yet been born of God is relatively simple: the person who keeps on transgressing the commandments, with the Sabbath commandment being the one most often transgressed, has not been born of God. Thus, all Christians who ignore the Sabbath have not yet been born of God regardless of what they believe about themselves. Now add to this, all Sabbatarians who deny Christ Jesus though claiming that God the Father is the creator of all that has been made do not honor their spiritual parents and thereby transgress the fifth commandment. This means that those Sabbatarians entrapped in the Sacred Names Heresy are not of God even though they claim affiliation, with their claim of affiliation forming the basis for why their sins are not forgivable. This also means that those Sabbatarians who are either Arians or Trinitarians transgress the fifth commandment and are not born of God.
There is really nothing difficult about understanding that in this present era, a Christian must add to the garment of Christ Jesus’ righteousness a second covering, that of walking as Jesus walked, something that the disciple does and something that Christ Jesus cannot do for the Christian. The theologian who teaches that the Christian needs to do nothing, that Paul could have kept on persecuting Christians and still have been saved because grace—the garment of Christ—is sufficient for salvation is of the Adversary and is not of God. And that is about as delicate as I can put it; for this theologian is a spiritual bastard, a murderer, the enemy of Christ, and by extension, my enemy. And such theologians abound in Protestant Christendom.
The counter argument to grace alone being sufficient for salvation is in the acts of the Lord causing Pharaoh to expel Abram from Egypt after returning Sarai to Abram, and in the acts of the Lord causing a later Pharaoh to expel Israel under Moses from Egypt … if grace alone was sufficient for salvation, Abram could have continued to dwell in Egypt, the geographical land representing Sin, the king of the South. Israel could have continued to dwell in Egypt, and the Christian Church could continue to dwell in this world without any end of the age coming upon Christians.
As Abram/Abraham is a type of Jesus the Nazarene, Moses is a type of Christ Jesus. And as Abram and Sarai were expelled from Egypt, and as Moses and Israel were expelled from Egypt, the greater Christian Church under the two witnesses [who will be as Moses and Aaron were] will be forcibly expelled from spiritual Babylon—and when forcibly expelled from sin, Christians do not have to do anything but endure to be saved, with this message of endurance being the endtime good news that must be delivered to every nation as a witness to all peoples (Matt 24:13–14).
· Sarai in Egypt and in Pharaoh’s house was covered by her obedience to her husband, Abram, who suffered a serious absence of faith after leaving his father’s house in Haran;
· The lawlessness of Israel in Egypt was covered by Israel having been made slaves of Pharaoh through Jacob leading the 70 down into Egypt;
· The lawlessness of greater Christendom has been covered by Christendom’s death; i.e., by its loss of the Holy Spirit late in the 1st-Century so that when the Apostle John died, the Church as the Body of Christ died.
The Second Passover liberation of Israel will see the forcible expulsion of greater Christendom from spiritual Babylon through every Christian being filled-with and empowered by the spirit of God. These liberated Christians can—and many will—return to spiritual Babylon by taking Sin back inside themselves, but in doing so they will commit blasphemy against the spirit, blasphemy that will not be forgiven. They become casualties in a war for which their pastors left them unprepared. Christians are not prepared to fight for righteousness even when given the righteousness of God; for they hadn’t practiced covering themselves with their own righteousness, walking uprightly before God. It hasn’t been their habit to keep the commandments to the best of their ability. So when Satan comes after them, they will willingly return to Sin, with their return assuring their death in the lake of fire.
If the majority of Christians will not strive to keep the commandments after they have been filled with spirit and have the commandments written on hearts and placed in minds, what is the likelihood of these Christians striving to keep the commandments today if they were born of spirit? Not great? That is correct. If they won’t keep the commandments when filled with spirit, they certainly wouldn’t in this present era. And if they sample/taste the goodness of God and will not then keep the commandments, they will have no sacrificing remaining. They will be condemned to the lake of fire when judgments are revealed. Therefore, out of love for those human beings who profess that Christ Jesus is Lord, God the Father has not given to them, except for the Elect, a second breath of life, His breath that gives to the person indwelling eternal life in the vessel that is the breath of Christ.
No human being can compel the Father to draw the person from this world as the Father drew the initial twelve Apostles and as He called Paul and Barnabas for the work He would have them do. It is the Father who determines to whom He will give a second breath of life, His breath, the breath of God [pneuma Theon]. A person can believe God and can cover him or herself with the person’s righteousness and can even seek to walk as Jesus walked—all without being born of God. There is no barrier that stops a person from keeping the Sabbath, or from honoring father and mother, or from loving neighbor and brother as the person loves him or herself—doing all without being born of God.
Keeping the Sabbaths of God is not a sign that the person has been born of God. Rather, keeping the Sabbath is the sign that the person knows that the Lord sanctifies Israel; therefore, when all of Christendom has been born of God and born filled-with and empowered by spirit, the Sabbath and Sabbath observance will mark those Christians who know that God sanctifies Israel, for all of Christendom will then be circumcised-of-heart Israel.
In his epistles, Paul doesn’t speak much about keeping the Sabbath, with Paul’s silence concerning the Sabbath leading to considerable speculation about the importance of keeping the Sabbath … Sabbath observance is the mark by which Christians disclose that they know that God sanctifies Israel; Sabbath observance is not a mark that God places on those who are His. Once the Second Passover occurs, Sabbath observance is a sign marking those who are of God. Hence Sabbath observance can be likened to a Christian woman covering her hair with fabric in this era—
The Mennonite woman who today covers her hair with a dolly discloses that she is in subjection to her husband, with her husband covering her transgression of the Sabbath commandment by having authority over her as Pharaoh in Egypt had authority over the people of Israel. However, following the Second Passover when both the Mennonite woman and her husband will no longer have indwelling Sin and Death in their fleshly members, both will have the Torah written on hearts and placed in minds so that both will finally know the Lord, the Mennonite woman will need to begin keeping the Sabbath—keeping all of the commandments—as the replacement for the garment of grace being stripped away (see Luke 17:30). When the Law is written on hearts and placed in minds, obedience to God through keeping the commandments will be as natural as long hair: the woman will have to do something, as in transgressing the Sabbath, to hinder this then natural though unnatural covering that equates to her hair. Following the Second Passover, to transgress the Sabbath would equate to the woman being shorn: she would deny glory to herself and to Christ Jesus, the Bridegroom.
In Paul saying little about Sabbath observance, Paul discloses that he realizes those fellowships to whom he addresses his epistles are primarily composed of converts who have not been born of spirit. Because “all who have sinned without the law will also perish without the law” (Rom 2:12), the judgment of a convert regardless of whether the convert is or isn’t born of God requires that the convert not sin; i.e., not transgress the commandments, especially the commandments pertaining to loving neighbor as self. Therefore, Paul focuses on love for brother and neighbor and doesn’t focus on the commandments that address love for God, which no person can truly have without being born of God.
Christians have sloppily said that so-&-so is born of spirit, or filled with spirit when that simply hasn’t been the case, with the best evidence of this in Christian women appearing as public women, thereby bringing shame to their husbands and fathers. … Using the former Worldwide Church of God (WCG) as an example, WCG’s founder and pastor-general Herbert W. Armstrong taught his disciples to keep the commandments and to keep the High Sabbaths of God. He taught his disciples—and they were his, not Christ’s—to abstain from unclean meats and to generally live healthy lives. But he also taught that a woman’s hair was her covering, that a woman needed no other covering. And in this teaching, he disclosed his lack of spiritual understanding that manifested itself in his prophetic teachings, none of which are of any use to a person born of God. And because Armstrong lacked spiritual understanding, he could never discern who did or didn’t have the spirit of God, and he continually placed men who were not born of God in positions of authority within WCG, with his placement of these men leading to the demise of his work almost immediately after his death in January 1986.
The person who has truly been born of God wants others to have been likewise born, and is overly eager to believe that every pious Christian has been born of spirit when this is just not the case.
Because the Christian who has not been born of God has no real comprehension of what it means to be born of spirit; and because the Christian who has truly been born of God wants to believe that everyone else has been so born; and because so few Christians have truly been born of God that no readily discernable measure exists to determine whether a person is or isn’t born of God, the general assumption of every Christian has been that all are born of God, or at least all within a particular sect or creed. The Lutheran will not accept a Jehovah Witness as being born of God, and a Mormon will not accept a Roman Catholic as being born of God, but the Lutheran is preconditioned to accept every other Lutheran as being born of God. The same applies in the other named sects and creeds. Therefore, many marriages were made inside and outside the former WCG that should not have been made: again, when there is no true understanding of what it means to have been born of God, there is no means for determining whether a man is a spiritual bastard or whether the woman is a spiritual Gentile.
A Christian man who is married to a spiritual Gentile is in a marriage that should not have occurred. In analogy, this Christian man is in a situation like that when “there were found some of the sons of the priests who had married foreign women” (Ezra 10:18) even after a remnant of Israel had returned to Jerusalem from Babylon. Porneia then existed, with porneia pertaining to marriages that were made that should not have been made. Likewise, the Christian man who knowingly marries a spiritual Gentile is guilty of porneia, in that the man is in a marriage that should never have occurred. And when porneia— from Matt 19:9] is translated as sexual immorality, or adultery, or fornication, the endtime Christian can begin to appreciate just how serious a matter it is when a Christian man marries a spiritually public woman.
The same holds in reverse when a Christian woman marries a spiritual Gentile, a man of this world, a spiritual bastard. The marriage is one that should not have occurred.
The Christian who refuses to walk as Jesus walked—that is, to walk as an observant Judean regardless of whether outwardly circumcised—is simply not of Christ. And if the Christian is not of Christ even though he or she professes that Jesus is Lord, the Christian is not a potential spouse for the believing Christian … no observant Christian should ever marry a Christian who refuses to walk as Jesus walked; for self-identification with Christ only means the person will be forcibly expelled from spiritual Babylon at the Second Passover liberation of Israel.
Paul sandwiched his references to coverings between his admonishment not to desire evil as Israel did in the wilderness (1 Cor 10:6) and to take the Passover in a worthy manner (1 Cor 11:17) … by the structure of Paul’s first recorded epistle to the holy ones at Corinth, Paul links imitating Jesus with head coverings and with taking the Passover sacraments on the night that Jesus was betrayed. And certainly, the Christian who walks as Jesus walked will take the Passover sacraments in a worthy manner.
When Israel ceased being the nation merely circumcised in the flesh, and the high priest changed from being a natural son of Levi to being Christ Jesus, the symbols of authority also changed: the paschal lamb was no longer a bleating sheep, a male of the first year without blemish, but became the Lamb of God, the man Jesus the Nazarene. And continuing this change of symbols, broken unleavened bread on the night of the First Unleavened, the dark portion of the 14th day of Aviv, represents the body of Jesus the Nazarene, with the Cup that Jesus blessed that night representing His blood that is poured out for the forgiveness of sins. But bread and wine on any other night of the year do not represent the body and blood of Jesus. Broken and blessed unleavened bread on the night that Jesus was betrayed—not on other nights, or on other days—serves as the symbol of Jesus’ broken body; for it isn’t the bread that is special, or even the prayer that is special, but rather, it is the belief of the disciple that is special, belief that will cause the disciple to take the Passover sacraments on the one night of the year when Jesus left His disciples with an example for how to take them, beginning with foot washing.
Walking as Jesus walked is a work of faith the Christian undertakes that is in addition to Jesus covering His disciples with His righteousness … in walking as Jesus walked, the feet of disciples become spiritually dirty and must be washed before taking the paschal sacraments. Thus, foot washing becomes a symbol or sign of striving-to but not being fully successful in walking as Jesus walked.
Taking the Passover sacraments of bread and wine on the night Jesus was betrayed is also a work of faith that is in addition to grace. Taking the Passover sacraments not many times a years—not weekly or quarterly or on a fixed day of the week—is for every Christian a sign that identifies the Body of Christ being in submission it its Head, Christ Jesus, as the woman, by covering her long hair with a covering she has made with her hands, signifies that she is in submission to her earthly husband.
For the woman, unshorn hair is her natural covering for which she does no work. Although there is work involved in maintaining her hair just as there is work involved in maintaining a relationship with Christ Jesus, there is no work involved in growing the hair just as there is no work involved in the disciple coming under grace. There is, however, work involved in the woman covering her hair with a fabric covering of her own making just as there is work involved in walking as Jesus walked, and as there is in taking the Passover sacraments on the night that Jesus was betrayed.
Generally, Christians fear works to such an extent that they willingly neglect salvation so as not to be involved in works.
Returning to Abraham, the suspension of disbelief necessary to accept the premise that the natural descendants of Jacob are of Hagar rather than being of the son of promise, Isaac, is also necessary for acceptance of the premise that Abraham had no seed prior to the birth of Christ Jesus:
To give a human example, brothers: even with a man-made covenant, no one annuls it or adds to it once it has been ratified. Now the promises were made to Abraham and to his offspring. It does not say, “And to offsprings,” referring to many, but referring to one, “And to your offspring,” who is Christ. This is what I mean: the law, which came 430 years afterward, does not annul a covenant previously ratified by God, so as to make the promise void. For if the inheritance comes by the law, it no longer comes by promise; but God gave it to Abraham by a promise. (Gal 3:15–18)
Was not Isaac born to Sarah by promise? And was not Esau and Jacob born to Isaac by promise? And were not the offspring of Jacob the “‘offspring’” that would “‘be sojourners in a land that is not theirs and will be servants there, and they will be afflicted for four hundred years’”? Was not the offspring that the Lord promised Abram the children of Jacob that should afterwards—after the 400 years—come out from Egypt with great possessions (Gen 15:13–15)?
Pause and consider the implications of the seed of Abram not being the natural descendants of the patriarch Jacob, but being Christians. Although the natural sons of Isaac through Jacob would, indeed, seem to satisfy the description of the seed promised to Abram when he had his belief of the Lord counted to him as righteousness, if the seed about which the Lord made a covenant with Abram/Abraham were Christians, then Christians have been “‘sojourners in a land that is not theirs’” (Gen 15:13), the theological reason for Christians to have nothing to do with the politics of this present world, a principle of Scripture that early Anabaptists understood.
If the promised seed of Abram “‘will be afflicted for four hundred years’” (Gen 15:13) in the land where they are servants, this four hundred year long affliction should be historically seen in the history of Christendom, and in particular in Anabaptist history. Therefore backing up from this present year, what is seen in, say, the year 1611, the year that the Kings James Bible made its appearance in history?
Small and trivial happenings occurred in Christendom apart from the publication of the King James translation in 1611; so is it possible—if the Second Passover liberation of Israel were to occur this year, 2011—that publication of the King James translation exactly 400 years ago could be an affliction, for the translation came about because James wished to guarantee the ecclesiology of the Church of England, reflecting its Episcopal structure, its beliefs about an ordained clergy.
The gravity of a discussion about the King James’ translation, which would seem to have been a blessing to greater Christendom actually being an affliction, will cause the earlier sections of this commentary to be ignored; hence, I will close this discussion here, in an unfinished state, with the auditor needing to realize that the man of perdition will come using his version of the King James’ translation to support the doctrines by which he will deceive greater Christendom.
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"Scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version, copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a division of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved."